Our long-term 2019 Subaru Forester is heading into the new year with a new set of shoes. Subaru’s all-wheel-drive system works perfectly fine, but all-wheel power is no replacement for a set of winter tires. And so our search for winter rubber began.

However, the search didn’t take that long, as a set of wheels and tires that fit our Forester happened to be laying around Autoblog HQ collecting dust. The wheels just so happened to be lightweight, gold 17-inch Sparco wheels we had previously fitted to our 2015 Subaru WRX long-term tester. Imagine our glee when we pulled these bad boys out of storage.

It’s only fitting that the blue Subaru in our long-term test fleet is also fitted with gold wheels as a tribute to all the gold-wheeled Subaru rally legends. The new Forester is nothing like a WRX or STI, but this setup has us smiling every time we walk out to the car. Take a nice, long scroll through the gallery above. We can’t stop obsessing over how much better they make the new Forester look. Maybe a special edition package … just a thought, Subaru.

Mounted on these wheels are new Michelin X-Ice winter tires. We’ve already driven it through a couple snowfalls in the midwest region, and the tires make this crossover a nearly unstoppable winter force. We hope to get some serious snow this winter that allows us to really take advantage of the new tires and the Forester’s high 8.7-inch ground clearance. More on that and the Forester’s performance to come.

Unfortunately, the spare set of wheels we had lying around didn’t have tire pressure monitoring sensors for the Forester sitting next to them. Until the little yellow light in the dash starts annoying us, we’re going to forego the expense of buying a new TPMS at the Subaru dealer — we imagine many owners skip the extra $150 or so for the sensors and check their tire pressure the old-fashioned way with winter wheels, too. After all, the tire pressure gauge still exists, and it works splendidly.

Watch out for another Forester update soon, as we get into some of the things we’ve liked and disliked over the past few months.